Eliott C. McLaughlin and Steve Almasy, CNN, July 27, 2016
Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby is going from prosecutor to civil defendant in connection with the case of the death of Freddie Gray.
On Wednesday, Mosby announced that charges against three officers still facing trial were being dropped. Mosby gave only a statement, but had to leave without taking questions because five of the officers in the case have filed lawsuits against her.
The lawsuits allege false arrest, false imprisonment, defamation or false light, and other assertions. They were filed in U.S. District Court in Maryland in 2015 in late April and early May around the time the officers were arrested.
An attorney for two of the officers said Wednesday that there were ulterior motives in charging the officers.
“Marilyn Mosby’s comments in her press conference today confirm that the charges brought against my clients, Sgt. Alicia White and Officer William Porter, as well as the other four officers, were politically motivated and not supported by evidence to establish probable cause,” Michael E. Glass said.
He said his client suffered “extensive pain and suffering.” Porter and White had been suspended without pay until Wednesday. They are now on desk duty after more than a year on leave.
Rice accuses Mosby of realizing the case would draw widespread media attention and speaking “in a divisive and inciting manner” while making false statements about him. Mosby’s remarks, Rice alleges, broke the state’s code of professional conduct, which forbids lawyers from making “an extrajudicial statement” they know will prejudice a court proceeding.
One of the false statements Mosby made, according to Rice’s case, was saying the knife Gray was arrested with was legal under Maryland law. Rice contests in his lawsuit that it was spring-assisted and therefore illegal, and says Mosby knew that.